Reducing underage drinking in Brazil
Teenage years have been identified as periods of experimentation and discovery. Parents and teachers are often not equipped or confident to approach the issue of drinking and yet education is critical for young people to avoid the dangers of underage drinking.
Case study 13 JUN 2018
With insights from the baseline study conducted on youth behavior, Mais Consciência (More Consciousness) was created to raise awareness of the choices young people between the ages of 13 and 17 can make around drinking. It is an invitation for them to think about their behavior and attitudes, and to make decisions based on reflection and information.
The pilot project took place on the periphery zone of Fortaleza City, in partnership with the local City Hall. It used interactions, theatre, artwork, the expertise of psychologists and the inspiration of popular rap artists Felipe Rima and. Hip-hop culture was chosen as a theme to connect and facilitate the dialogue with the students. Mixing entertainment with technical knowledge and rich content such as graffiti artwork and quizzes, proved a success in the 3 schools visited.
In the first phase of the programme in 2015, Mais Consciência (MC) directly engaged about 200 students in the 3 schools. By 2017, the number of schools involved had increased to 10 with 400 students participating in the programme. With a growing evidence base in the programme, the municipal government of Fortaleza supported the 2017 campaign.
By 2017, there was a 50% decrease in the number of teenagers who reported consuming alcohol after they had participated in the campaign. 64% of students said they were interested in the programme with 36% indicating they were engaged throughout the sessions. 80% of students understood the consequences of underage drinking. MC was included in the 5 top of projects in Latin America to receive a SABRE Award, recognizing MC as a campaign with the highest levels of strategic planning, creativity and results.
“I learned that I can enjoy a party without drinking, that many people drink only after being pressured. No one is obliged to follow anyone else's mind.”Student
“It helped us be more informed because many don't have information at home and the project gave a lot of information during interactions with students.”Student
Due to the success of MC, the programme was extend to schools in the neighbouring country of Uruguay demonstrating the opportunity to apply the learnings in the region.